Anti-Hate Speech Bill draconian, threat to democracy – Sokoto Governor 

Ismail Umar, Sokoto 

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The Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, has dismissed the move to foster the Anti-Hate Speech Bill on Nigerians as a move that is harsh and against the letter and spirit of Nigeria’s democracy.

Governor Tambuwal stated this while delivering his speech at the opening of the 15th edition of the 2019 Nigeria Guild of Editors’ Conference in Sokoto State.

According to him, the haste to get the bill signed has scared Nigerians, making them to wonder what real motive behind it is.

He pointed out that there are many provisions in the Constitution which stipulate how to tackle offenders whose conducts or omissions would erode the nation’s security and unity,

Tambuwal stated that, “the Anti – Hate Speech Bill on Nigerians that prescribes death penalty for offenders has shocked Nigerians.

 “This is quite scary and has indeed set people thinking on the true intention of the proponents of the bill. There are enough provisions in our laws to deal with people whose actions can undermine national unity and cohesion.”

The governor, therefore, submitted that: “such draconian legislation has no place in a constitutional democracy like ours.”

Governor Tambuwal challenged the media to be vigilant as it has the onerous responsibility to educate and mobilize Nigerians to defend this democracy.

“We cannot operate a democracy like a military dictatorship. The storms are gathering. We must join hands to checkmate anti-democratic elements and return our country to the path of constitutionalism, progress and development,” the Governor noted.

Governor Tambuwal called for speedy review of the bill according to the constitutional laws.